Week 7 done… 5 weeks to go! Lovely Jubbly!

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Got milk? My standard post-run recovery drink!

It’s not been too bad of a week for running, just coming off a race and all.  I only ran twice mid-week because, let’s face it, the hills from last Sunday… well, we’ll just say I needed a bit of recovery in there (ouchie!).  And then my most favorite of runs today, the dreaded LSR… today… 9 miles… today… ugh.

Actually, the run didn’t start off so bad.  I’ve gotten some great inspiration from other bloggers, so I was pumped and ready to tackle it head on.  I even chose the dreaded hill route for my first 5 miles because, dang it, I want to get strong for my upcoming half. I’m happy to say I nailed that beast!  I also switched my run/walk interval times as a way to improve my overall time (run more, walk less), and I nailed that as well!  And I also took the “mind over matter” approach… I completely ignored any type of typical running pain I felt and just ran through it.  Even that worked for me!

But then I hit mile 7.  It was as if my body said, “Oh screw you… if you’re not going to pay attention to how I feel, I’m going to stop cooperating.”  At which point I promptly felt every ache down to the core of my bones.  All of a sudden, I felt how bad my feet hurt, how bad every bone in my body hurt, the pain my joints, the fatigue in my legs.  My toenails even hurt!  My ponytail was all of a sudden too tight!  And I couldn’t freaking catch my breath.

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This is not a sunrise or sunset picture. The orange haze is from the fires that are burning up our state. Makes air quality very poor.

Now, to give you a little insight, Washington state is in the midst of a whole bunch of wildfire crises.  About 165 miles NE of where I live, the little town of Twisp has all but burnt to the ground.  Three firefighters lost their lives fighting this fire last Wednesday.  And the air quality is horrendous, all the way down to Seattle.  The air kept getting thicker and thicker the longer I ran.  As I wasn’t mentally prepared for this, my subconscious fought me really hard and actually broke me.  I couldn’t breathe properly, and once I “felt” I couldn’t breathe properly, the rest of me shut down.  I fought it for a long time, about a mile and a half, but it won in the end.  I ended up only doing 8.5 miles and was terribly sore afterwards.

I didn’t realize how much of a mental struggle that actually was until The Motivator and I analyzed it, because I was so strong in my run for so long.  But my mind found one little thing to focus on, my breathing, and took that opportunity to shut me down.  It’s kind of amazing how that works, isn’t it.  The mind is a powerful thing, don’t underestimate it.  When they say “running long distances is a mental game,” it truly is.  I gave in this time, but I won’t be fooled again.

Another clue as to how this was all mental on my part… James ran 17 miles today no problem, breathing in the thick smoky air way more than me, and he lived to tell about it.  He’s got the mental thing down pat… I still have a bit to learn.  I’ll get there.

I leave you with one last thought… when running long distances, please don’t forget the Body Glide or Vaseline!  But if you do, make sure no one is in the house to hear you scream when you take your shower!

Have a great week!  Next up… 10 miles!!  (Will she live to talk about it?!)

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Hmmm, according to Garmin Connect, I actually did do 9.4 miles. I’ll take it!

20 thoughts on “Week 7 done… 5 weeks to go! Lovely Jubbly!

  1. Kevin

    I ran in the smoke today too just across the border in BC. I have never done that before but you are right that it does a number on your lungs. Maybe half of the problem was mental but I still had to get over that. Maybe this week won’t have much outside running.

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  2. christinaoc

    I have recently had to start putting Aquaphor on my feet to help reduce the friction! My dogs are tired! I also tried KT tape because I was having some pain in my left quad area and my calf. I was pleasantly surprised that it helped – I didn’t think there would be any real benefit, but my calf definitely feels better. The quad – maybe. Anyway, maybe give it a go and see if it helps with some of the discomfort. The brand I used (KT Tape) has instructional videos on how to put on the tape. 🙂

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  3. aidyl93

    The mind is definitely a powerful thing! You just have to wrestle with it until you can make it be powerful in your favor. I know you can do it!! Congratulations though; getting to mile 7 before it taking over is super impressive, plus finishing 8.5. Nothing to be ashamed of!

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  4. breidengale

    I am in WA and my beautiful city was so heavy with smoke on Friday even the warehouse where I work was filled with it. I couldn’t even dare to think about running outside because of the smoke/asthma combo…yet I saw all kinds of people out there. you are so right about the mental thing and our body seeking out the weakness and exposing it…

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  5. Wenaissance

    Heat, wildfires, poor air quality…and you still did it! Way to go!! I love running outside but I’m also a fan of the treadmill. I know, I think something is wrong with me. I focus on counting down instead of counting up (Only 6 more miles, I can totally do 6 miles), and I also remind myself that I’m giving my poor old knees a break by not running on the sidewalk. Mind games…can’t run without them.

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      1. Wenaissance

        I have a playlist of my favorite songs on iPod that I only play when I’m on the treadmill so that keeps it fun for me. I’ve tried watching Hulu on my Kindle but I can’t get into running while watching TV.

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  6. Rebecca Royy

    We don’t have fires, but in the spring the pollen is so bad you can actually see it floating through the air. I think you are Wise to go inside today. You don’t know what everyone else is coughing up today!

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